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Residential Courses "Gardens" 18th-25th October 2013

Following my Alice in Wonderland exhibition Alice's journey to find the beautiful garden, I will be focusing on my own ideas for "Gardens". During the week I will share my inspiration and the techniques used to create the hangings shown in this exhibition.

The Lost Gardens of Heligan are on our doorstep we will begin the course with a visit to the gardens. From here you will draw inspiration from the unique atmosphere, and plants and combine this with text and icons around the theme of gardens.

I have used Alice in Wonderland as my inspiration, however you might like to consider The Secret Garden, The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady or The Language of Flowers, Hanging Gardens, Vegetable/Herb Gardens or Knot Gardens as your inspiration.

Before the course begins I will discuss with each student their aims in order that the week can be tailored as much as possible to each individuals requirements. That might be developing your machine embroidery or trying it for the first time, experimenting with new materials such water soluble or metallics or playing with fabric and silk paints.

You will begin a book of design ideas perhaps an "altered book" or a sketchbook based around text and icons. These can be developed into a personal sample book or used as the source for a stitched panel.

You will stay on the beautiful working farm of Bodrugan Barton where you will have use of the heated indoor swimming pool, and sauna. For more information on the farm and accomodation click here

Cost is 450. A deposit of 120-00 is payable on booking. This deposit will be refunded on cancellation only if your place can be filled. The remainder to be paid in instalments. You can pay by cheque, payable to Anne Griffiths, 4 Gabriel House, Newbury Street, Wantage, Oxon OX12 8DJ, or securely online using your credit/debit card via PayPal.

Here are more of my sketchbook images for the course and students' work.

If you are interested in hand stitching then have a look at images for Fruit Harvest which could be used as an theme for a hand embroidered Fruit Garden.


Arrive 16.00 for Introduction and Discussion

Welcome Dinner 19.30 (cost included).


Visit the Lost Gardens of Heligan to gain inspiration.

Sunday 10.00 - 16.30 (lunch included)

Printing and Machine Embroidery

Using text as a starting point we will print using a variety of blocks and stencils onto fabric and paper for embellishment with stitch.

If you have not tried free machine embroidery before or just want to practise. We will look at mastering the use of metallic threads, twin needles, wing needles, vermicelli, or playing with tension to stitch cable or whip stitch. For the more experienced, use a printed letter or phrase as a starting point for a set of samples.

Monday 10.00 - 16.30 (lunch included)

Edges, Insertions and Soluble Fabric

This will be a follow up on machine embroidery using soluble fabrics. Depending on your previous experience you can create either a 3d Fantasy Flowers corsage, experiment with borders use motifs to join sections or patterns inspired by lace.

If you have not tried before, use soluble as a support for delicate and fine fabrics such as silk which we will be using later in the week.

Tuesday 10.00 - 16.30 (lunch included)

Resists with Silk and Fabric Paints - Hand or Machine Embroidery

No Need for Gutta! If you have felt frustrated that you just don't have a steady enough hand to manipulate a tube of gutta for achieve fine lines, or you don't want a white outline to your painting, then this is for you. Use paints and perhaps bronzing powder to add text or motifs to a silk background fabric, then flood with colour and stitch.


Free day for sightseeing / or working on project.

Thursday 10.00 - 16.30 (lunch included)

Patterns and Textures with Metallic Materials - Hand or Machine Embroidery

Have you ever been seduced by angelina, metallic threads, shim or bronzing powders? Well today is the day to learn how to use them. If you have traditional goldword threads, purl or check and you would like to experiment with them, let me know prior to the course and we can discuss working with these using hand stitch.

Conclusion and Dinner 19.30 (cost included).


Depart 10.00.